The Epistemological Challenge of Religious Pluralism

Faith and Philosophy 14 (3):277-286 (1997)
Abstract
A critique of responses to the problem posed to Christian philosophy by the fact of religious plurality by Alvin Plantinga, Peter van lnwagen, and George Mavrodes in the recent Festschrift dedicated to William Alston, and of Alston’s own response to the challenge of religious diversity to his epistemology of religion. His argument that religious experience is a generally reliable basis for belief-formation is by implication transformed by his response to this problem into the principle that Christianity constitutes the sole exception to the general rule that religious experience is an unreliable basis for belief-formation, thus undermining his central thesis. Plantinga’s and van Inwagen’s defenses of the logical and moral permissability of Christian exclusivism fail to address the problem posed by the existence of other equally well-based religious belief-systems with equally valuable fruits in human life. Mavrodes’ discussion of polytheism, and his clarifying questions about religious pluralism, are also discussed
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Merold Westphal (1999). The Politics of Religious Pluralism. The Proceedings of the Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy 1999:1-8.
Alvin Plantinga (1999). ``Pluralism: A Defense of Religious Exclusivism&Quot. In Kevin Meeker & Philip Quinn (eds.), The Philosophical Challenge of Religious Diversity. New York: Oxford University Press. 172-192.
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